Multitools are one of my favorite tools to keep around the house, bug out bag, gun cleaning kit and tackle box. The thing about multitools, they have a great service to weight ratio. They weigh almost nothing, but are cram-packed full of useful tools – knife, file, scissors, saw, screwdrivers,,,,, just all kinds of useful stuff. Another thing that I like about multitools, is that they come in a wide range of sizes and prices.
The wide range of prices, sizes and features is what makes multitools so cool. If you want to buy a cheap multitool for your gun cleaning kit, there is probably one out there for you, if you want a small multitool for your tackle box, there is one out that will probably fit your needs.
While I was looking through my multitool setup, I realized that I had them arranged in 3 levels – primary, secondary, and tertiary.
My primary multitool is a Gerber – I do not even remember what model it is, its about 10 years old, has a knife, file, saw, scissors, and has a good pair of pliers built in. This this the tool that I bring on my hiking, camping and backpacking trips. When I need a multitool, this is the one that I usually go to.
Secondary multitool is one that I keep around, somewhere close at hand. Lets say that my Gerber is in a backpack, this is the tool that I go to. Its some generic no real brand name multitool and probably cost less the $20. Regardless of the low cost, it still has some tools that can be handy when in a pinch.
Third multitool is one that one that I keep stored somewhere, like in a tackle box or gun cleaning kit, where I need a tool from time to time. These are usually small and inexpensive tools that do not get a lot of stress applied to them. My third level of multitools are ones that are bought and stored until needed.
Another example of a third level multitool would be one that would be kept in a boat survival kit. This would need to be a good quality tool, and would be stored in a water tight box on the boat for months on end, until needed. Since this tool would probably be used for working on the boat motor, this tool might need a small socket set included. There are some tools on the market that have a built in nut driver, and a small assortment of sockets ranging from about 3/16 to about 7/16.
I keep a third level multitool in my gun cleaning kit, trotline bucket, and tackle box. The multitool is only about 2.75 inches when folded up.
During Christmas in 2010, my family did a white elephant game. Long story short my brother ended up with a mutitool. The tool was not very expensive, but he was glad to have it. While my brother was looking at the tool, he commented that he needed something like that a couple of weeks earlier. Come to find out, while on a duck hunting trip the boat motor had messed up. In order to fix the motor, the guys needed a pair of pliers. Well guess what, nobody had a pair or pliers or a multitool. They either had to be towed back to shore, or fired up the trolling motor and headed back to the boat launch.
For field operations, multitools can be used to assemble molle packs, disassemble and reassemble firearms, and other odds and ends.
Now for a random video about how to assemble a MOLLE pack. When I was putting this MOLLE pack together, I used a small multitool to grab some of the metal clips on the straps and pull them through the frame.
when I am camping with my medium ALICE pack, I like to store my Gerber multitool in the radio pouch inside the pack.
When I am out in the field with my large ALICE pack, I like to store my Gerber multitool in one of the small 3 pouches on the outside of the pack.
With my large MOLLE pack, I installed a Maxpedition pouch on the outside of the pack and keep the multitool there.
With any of my various daypacks, I will keep a multitool in an outside pouch so its close at hand.
Copyright 2011 Kevin Felts. No part of this article may be reprinted or republished without written permission.